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William Riggs


1931 - 2016 Obituary Condolences
William Riggs Obituary
Riggs, William Carroll (Bill)



William Carroll Riggs (Bill) began his last ride into the sunset on July 17, 2016 and ended his ride by climbing a rocky path to the summit where he saw a brilliant blue sky and a border collie. Bill was born in Trinidad, CO on Sept 14, 1931 to William Albert and Laura Mae Stubblefield Riggs. His early years were spent in Trinidad with his beloved aunts & uncles. He graduated from Belen High School in 1950. He enlisted in the Navy where he was stationed in the Territory of Hawaii during the Korean Conflict. He flew transport planes throughout the Pacific. While stationed in Hawaii in 1952 he married Diane Campbell also from Belen.

In 1955 Bill and Diane moved to the Estancia Valley and made the Valley their home. Bill enjoyed flying and was a pilot from the age of 16 until his health grounded him. He lived for the next hunting and fishing trip and most of the time the big one did not get away. He was a cowman at heart and always looked forward to the next crop of calves. He then showed those Gelbvieh calves at the New Mexico State Fair and at the Colorado State Fair. He listened to Cowboy Poetry because he had lived the stories in his day to day life.

He contributed to his community in many ways during his life. He was a Mason and served as Worshipful Master of the Estancia Lodge #33. He belonged to the Moriarty Rotary Club. For many years when the Moriarty Rotary Club sponsored the Annual Christmas Parade with Santa Claus coming to Moriarty, Bill was never to be found. Many 4-H members sat at his kitchen table working on their leather craft projects for county and state fairs. Several 4-H & FFA members were given Gelbvieh calves to show at the local fairs. He was a 4-H Club Leader for the Moriarty Willing Workers Club for over 15 years. The New Mexico State FFA Association honored Bill with an Honorary State Farmer Degree. He was honored to have his name on the fence at the Moriarty Heritage Arena.

Bill had many loyal and beloved friends in his lifetime. In his later years he also developed friendships with people from Germany, England, the Netherlands & Slovenia who were thrilled to hear of his legendary hunting skills and his ability to shoot quarters from the sky with a 22 Rifle. Even without eyesight he knew, where every fence post, road and cow was on his BR Bar Ranch.

Bill is survived by his wife Diane of 65 years. Daughters Anna Riggs Eader & David Eader, Margaret Riggs Hanks & Scott Hanks. Sons William & Luhree Riggs, and Robert & Robin Riggs. In addition, he is survived by his grandchildren Ethan Hanks, Zane, Dylan, Garrett Riggs & Eric Wright. He also leaves behind his sisters Judy Beavers & her family of Ruidoso, NM and Sharon Pepper & her family of Iowa. Bill had many special and loyal friends throughout the state. The family would like to say a special thank you to his medical friends who cared for him over the years as well as Heritage Hospice who cared for him at the end. Cremation has taken place. A memorial celebration of his life will take place in Moriarty in the autumn, his favorite time of year. Bill's final resting place will be in Trinidad, CO in the family plot.
Published in Albuquerque Journal on July 24, 2016
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